Landrover

What size wiper blades for Discovery 1 300TDI or V8?

I got fed up of attempting to search the web for the size of wiper blades after another muddy bath destroyed the rubbers on mine, so thought it would be worthy of note.

Landrover Discovery 1 uses 18″ for both front wiper blades and 13″ for the rear wiper blade. I’ve tried various sorts, but nothing seems to beat the original style wiper blades.

These are the ones I purchased: Bosch SP18 Super Plus ( £5.34 ) and for the rear you need 13″ ones ( £5.42 ).

Repairing Discovery 300TDI Auto Cruise Control

Just a quick guide here on repairing the most common problem with Discovery 300TDI Auto cruise control – the vacuum hose.  These rubber hoses seem to quite easily perforate or crack over time and it’s very easy to fix.  Firstly, if the cracks are small and near the joins just cut the hose and reconnect.  This only works if you have enough hose.  In my case the hose has already been cut too short and is actually just dangling in the engine bay.  So a quick trawl over to ebay found new silicon hose cheap enough.

I’ve purchased some silicon hose – 5m of 5mm internal diameter and 10mm outer.  This gives 2.5mm of wall which should be enough.   5m is overkill too, but it leaves about 1m for the toolbox.

Discovery 300TDI Auto Cruise Control Vacuum Hose - simple tools required

Tools required are very basic – a good knife, some pliers and some nice hot water.

First off, I’m starting at the auto speed controller unit thingy (I’m guessing there is a real name for this unit).  The hose here for me has already cut by a previous owner, but clearly this was too short and didn’t reach the t-piece.  So that’s a timely reminder to measure twice and cut once 🙂

So, taking the old hose off (very easily in my case), I use this to measure the length of new hose required.  Remembering in my case that the hose was too short, so I’ve added to the length (best to measure long and cut back later if your not sure).  Using the hot water to warm the silicon doesn’t seem to make any difference, but as a homage to the old rubber hoses and to make me feel better I’ve done it anyway.

Discovery 300TDI Auto Cruise Control Vacuum Hose - hot waterWith one end connected to the Auto unit, I warm the other end going to the t-peice.  Once connected up it’s time to look at the longer pipe.  Remove from the T around the bulkhead and into the aux battery/jack area.  Here the pipe dives under what would be the battery tray and into the pump.  The pump is not easy to see and whilst it can be removed, I’m not looking to waste time.

Drilling off the jack mounting plate to gain access to vacuum pump

 

So with that thought, I’ve drilled the rivets holding the pump base into place and removed.  This gives just enough access from the top to do the job and I can replace later if needed.  Removal of the old hose shows that it was completely perished and not even connected to the pump.

Now use this pipe to measure a new length – as always a bit longer is better and remember it can be cut back later.  I’m starting by connecting at the pump end.  On the right hand side of the pump are two projections – your aiming for the back one, slightly shorter.  Push it on as far as you can and give it a tug – it should be a secure fit.

Discovery 300TDI Auto Cruise Control Vacuum Hose - to the pump

 

The picture above shows the red silicon hose that I’m using and just visible through the left hold is part of the pump.  Now route the hose back around the bulkhead using the clips where available and trim if required at the t-piece.

Discovery 300TDI Auto Cruise Control Vacuum Hose - T piece connected

 

Connect to the t-piece and you should have replaced most of the hose.  There is one more that goes through the bulkhead into the drivers footwell, but this one is in good condition for me and I’m stopping at this point.    So final picture from me shows a little more of the engine bay and the new red silicone hose.

Discovery 300TDI Auto Cruise Control Vacuum Hose - complete

 

So did it fix the problem… oh yea 🙂  fully working Cruise Control now on my 300TDI Auto!  Simple fix and only 10 mins of my day used.

Just found a nice guide to the rest of the system – it can be found on Landyzone here.

 

One Discovery squeak sorted but found another one – bah

The annoying squeak on my Discovery 1 300 TDI was driving me mad, so I've replaced the ancillary pulley (idler) with a new one – it's part number ERR7295 and quite expensive for a landy part. Stopped the squeak all right and the bearing was seriously nackered. So I've silenced one, but now found another… the tensioner, so back off to ebay for part number ERR4708 or well in my case just the bearing for the part. It's a lot cheaper and it's the only bit that's broken, so it's not worth replacing the whole tensioner unit. So hopefully by the weekend I will be fighting a snap ring to get the old bearing out.

There is a good guide to replacing the bearing on the Landy World web site.

Quick review of Cetane Boosters for Veggie Oil (WVO and SVO)

The Land Rover I have, may be old, but she run’s just fine on a combination of veggie oil, biodiesel and diesel. This gives me a good choice on how I fuel the vehicle and how much I pay to fuel the vehicle. With WVO being a premium now, I am finding it ever more difficult to get good consistent sources; and then why I do find something it ends up being 50% bit of crap and 50% WVO. SVO is not my ideal choice, not only for ethical reasons (we cannot produce enough of it), but also the added things like anti-foaming/gelling agents don’t help combustion. I’ve no evidence to suggest that they are removed when used as cooking oil, but the stuff I use as WVO always seems to make a smoother sounding engine. So I’ve been testing Cetane boosters to see how effective they are with SVO and to see if they take some of the knock out of ordinary SVO.

First up is the Diesel Nitrox Cetane Booster. It claims to do the same as the much more expensive branded products. It’s one of those bottles where you have to guess a bit on how much you add, but if your doing a whole tank full it’s quite easy. It worked well and certainly reduced the diesel noise as well as appearing to give a little more performance. Nothing scientific here, it’s all perception. For the money it’s easily the best available.

For a few pounds more, you can get Millers Oils – Diesel Power Eco Max 500ml. It claims similar things, but suggests it boosts the Cetane number by 5. It’s much easier to measure how much you need to add with this bottle layout and it did just as good as job as the cheaper product’s here. It doesn’t claim anything fancy, but suggests your car will be more environmentally friendly by using less diesel and putting out less emissions. There is a tentative link to the claim, but your not saving the environment with these products directly, just helping WVO or SVO do their job better.

The last one is Morris Superclean DD. Nothing on the package to show it’s a cetane booster, but it’s in there. No claims on how high you can boost it by either; just simple honest – “this will make things a bit better” marketing. Give them credit for that. They seem to be a UK company too, but I can’t see where the product is manufactured. Like the others, it did what it said on the tin and was definitely better than nothing and as good as the others. Like the Millers Oils product, it has an easy measure which makes it a lot easier to use.

Search around for the best prices for these products, but they are all around the £7-£12 bracket for their standard size. So which one do I use? I’m sticking with Morris Superclean DD as it’s seems a good working product, with an easy measure and it does what it says on the product blurb.

Found anything better? Let me know and I will try it out.

Discovery headlight falling out? Simple repair

If you've a Landrover Discovery 1, doesn't seem to matter which engine (200TDI, 300TDI, V8) and your headlight keeps falling out, there is a simple repair and a cheap part number to sort it out.

Get yourself some of these… its part number STC3368.

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STC3368 Landrover Discovery Headlight Plastic Clip

You need three of these for each light, or just check the broken ones and replace them. They are cheap, so I've replaced all three for a nice snug fit. Pull out your headlight and you will see three plastic clips in three corners of the headlight. It's a simple bit of screw driver action to take the old ones out and put the new ones in. Don't over tighten them as they could crack your plastic headlight unit – and you don't want to have to replace that.

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Three plastic clips holding the Discover headlight in place.

When your done, just push it back in place. Remembering that it may be a little tight now. Shame this sort of thing isn't included in my Land Rover Discovery Petrol and Diesel Service and Repair Manual: 1989-1998 (Haynes Service and Repair Manuals)"".

Head Gasket gone again – 300TDI – is it the veggie oil?

It's annoying, but it seems that after only 10K miles the head gasket has gone (or is going) again. Got quite a bit of white smoke on start-up, so I suspect that water is leaking into the exhaust system again. Given that my Discovery 300TDI is old and high mileage, I would not be surprised, but it's had a new skimmed head and a new gasket. This leads me to think that either their is a problem with the new gasket, perhaps a problem with the block or perhaps it's the WVO (waste veggie oil) that I'm using? Each sound progressively less likely, but there is clearly a problem here. When I get a moment, I will take the head off again and have a look. Bit annoying though.

Mud, water and rust in my Discovery 300TDI Gear Box Selector

Been having a problem for a while changing gear, it's ok when cold, but as it warms up the darn thing gets stiffer and stiffer. I'm starting to get arm fatigue and debating if the Discovery 300TDI should go in the bin. After a lot of suggestions from forums etc I decided that it's either a broken gear box (likely to be too expensive to repair), or a selector problem. So with my 'hoping its the selector cos it's easier to fix' hat on I stripped out the centre console, drilled out the rivets holding the rubber membrane and peered into the top of the gear box.

Not quite sure what I was looking at I stuck a good ole finger down the hole, which came out covered in water, mud, and rust. A soup of nasties that should not be sat on in the gear stick housing. So off with the housing. It was full to the top with this stuff. Not good.

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Discovery 300TDI gearbox selector housing full of water

Time to dig a bit deeper. With the housing off a good slug of gross, muddy water came out leaving a sludge of rust, mud and small stones. After a good deal of cleaning it finally looked more like the gear selector.

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I used up half a can of WD-40 just to loosen the compacted mud and rust. But at least it's all gone now. Last step was to pull the gear lever out and check the bush, ball and general yolk condition.

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Thankfully it's not too bad. A lot of scratches from small stones, but after a bit of light sanding it looks as new. Nylon bush was in good condition. When reassembled there is perhaps too light a movement now – perhaps a sign a new bush/yolk is required.

Moral of the story – if you pay a shed load of cash to someone from a reputable garage to put a reconditioned box in for you – go check their work. All they did here was leave off a single metal gasket around the gear selector housing allowing mud and water to get in. Simple mistake, damn annoying to fix. Oh and no – they refused to offer compensation or an apology. Seriously bad form.

Rats ate my gearbox

I've been having a right pain changing gear recently in the old Discovery 300TDI, the gear shift seems to get stiffer the 'warmer' the engine (or gearbox) leaving the gear leave tight and non-centering. I've been putting off looking at it fearing something very expensive, but finally got around to looking last night. Checked the oil levels and they are fine with the oil appearing clear and almost new on the end of my finger. So off with the cover surrounding the gear lever and start my visual inspections before removing the centre console. But hang on – what's happened to all the foam? err and why is it in small shredded bits?

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Don't know how yet, but it's clear rats or mice have got in and shredded the foam for nest use. I'm pleased I didn't find one looking back at me and no sign of droppings either. But I can't help wondering of the small shredded bits of foam rubber have made it into my gear box via the gear lever. Gonna have some fun this weekend taking the centre console out and having a look.

Good service for my Disco 300TDI

Gave the Disco 300TDI a service today. This is the first service since rebuilding the engine and by the thick and lumpy oil coming out I should have done it earlier. Decided to use just cheapo 15/40W engine oil (value branded) and see how it goes. Sump plug was a little tight, but other than that everything went ok. Because I run on old veggie oil I change the fuel filter at every service (and even in between services) and it was a good job too – quite a few bits in there caused by my less that perfect filtering techniques on the waste veggie oil plus I ran out a few weeks back pulling loadsa crud down the line and into the filter. Finished off with a good spray round of light oil to arrest some of the rust and a cetane booster in the fuel tank for a bit more go. Seemed much quieter on the journey home from the field. Next items are the gearbox/transfer box oil levels, FTC2203 in the gearbox yolk and all round greasing.

Pic’s of my new (well very old) 1970’s Series IIA Land Rover

Few pic's here – it's not the standard 2.25 petrol unit that the chassis implies, so I'm going to have to find out what it is. Perhaps 2.5 n/a?

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So what's this engine then?
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14J Engine Number

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My personal favourite is… well it's not the oil cooler lines joined together (without going through a cooler), but the 6 tone siren complete with in cab controls for 'over 50 different sounds' !

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Landrover Disco air filter – a darn big hole

Not sure why this is happening – twice now – looks like it's been pulled apart. Must be getting a little too damp.

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How to make your Landy more reliable

Just a bit of fun this one. Someone actually bought me this – they thought I would finally be able to rebuild a Landrover without help from the father in law ":-O"

The undercoat is on

What an utterly messy job – undersealing the landy. So good prep was needed, first a plastic sheet on the ground (an old dust sheet) and reverse the landy over it. This keeps it in place and helps to cover off any over spray of the gunk. Next step was to cover everything that I didn't want coated – exhaust, wheels, brakes etc. I did this with a whole bunch of old packaging paper and a bit of paper tape to keep it in place. The underseal can go anywhere, so make sure you have a good wrap of paper with no gaps.

For the underbody seal we used some stuff from Machine Mart – Tetraschutz. It's only 5 quid or so for a litre and you can use a standard compressor and underseal gun for it. With only the rear boot section to do I used a couple of litres and put two coats on the boot area and a single coat on anything else I could see. The only (and quite a big) down side is that I didn't have the time or kit to jack the landy up and take the fuel tank off. So there is a whole area above the fuel tank that has not been covered. This should not be too much of a problem though as most of that area I have coated with zinc primer and a layer or two of hammerite black. I also took the opportunity to spray some in the chassis and wheel arches and well just about anywhere that looked like the original underseal was starting to crack or fall off.

I've got to say though that the Tetraschutz went on very well and has clung to just about everything it was aimed at. It took a day or so to dry into what feels (and looks) like fresh bitumen. Only time will tell how well it stays on there and how good it is at repelling dirt and water.

One note though this stuff sticks – it seems to especially like any exposed skin and it mostly likes to clump together a group of hairs for fun. So wrap up well, then wrap up again over the top of it ":-P"

300TDI boot repaired

The rusty boot in my old Discovery 300TDI is not unexpected. Just about any Disco of this age seems to suffer. Anyway, old boot floor was taken out (see previous post) and a nice new one welded in by the father in law. To do this I drilled what seemed like a million holes in the new boot floor and he welded through them. This should give something akin to the spot welds originally used – they may actually be stronger as there are more weld points.

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New boot floor complete with larger weld holes, zinc and a load of paint

As you can see in this picture, there weld holes are a bit rough, but no one is going to see them so I don't need to grind them off. Everywhere has had two coating's of high zinc primer (80% zinc) and on the inside of the landy there is bit too generous coating of Hammerite.

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You can see here the zinc primer and the first coat of Hammerite black

You can see in the picture above the nice coat of zinc primer and the first coat of Hammerite black. Each of the weld points has this treatment as have areas that are likely to rust (gullies around the boot floor etc).

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Waxoyl in all hidden spots

Areas not exposed have also had a coat of galv repair zinc spray (95%+ zinc) then a good spray of Waxoyl. This should help keep these areas rust free for many more years. None of it looks elegant though, but you never get to see it so who cares!

Now time to put the internal trim back together and replace most of the rusty screws, washers, nuts and bolts with stainless versions.

Landrover Discovery 300TDI rusted boot panel

The old Landrover Discovery 300TDI has a rust spot or two (well ok, a lot of rust spots) all around the boot area in the usual boot panel and under the wheel arches. Rust is such a damn nightmare on these older landies, and with the disco's boot floor up you can see why…

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As you can see from this I've taken the boot panel out. What a darn tedious nightmare it is to remove all of the spot welds! Anyway, as you may be able to see in the picture, the underseal doesn't cover much, especially any of the crevices that water and muck just loves to stick. A lot of the panels around the outside have rusted as well and there are some very nasty rust spots in the wheel arches (big enough to get my arm in). I don't want to take the sills off yet, but I suspect they are in just as good a condition.

After a good clean up and a lot of angle grinder action we are back to bare metal and ready to weld on new bits. I've decided not to paint the chassis or cross members as the rust is only surface, so I've wire bushed off the worst and used a high zinc spray to cover the tops of everything. When I've put the panels back I'll underseal the lot and it should last for quite some time. More pictures to come of the boot panel going back in and the nightmare that is undersealing ":-)"

Biodiesel in my Landrover 300TDI

So, I've gone through my first full tank of Biodiesel from Thatcham. 90 Litres of the stuff. How did I get on? I ran very very low on the oil veggie oil that was in there to ensure that I had as pure a mixture as I could get and filled it to the brim in Thatcham. I've got to say that I've not noticed any difference from running on either straight Diesel or cetane boosted straight veggie oil. I wonder why we everyone doesn't start using this type of fuel? Mind you, a lot of diesel cars can easily run on filtered waste veggie oil which would be better still. Why have manufacturer's not picked up on this and started marketing their cars this way?

300TDI Engine Rebuilt but…

So far all has gone well on the rebuild of the 300tdi. The new cylinder head looks to be good and has cleaned up well. Fitting the new pistons has been a little more difficult as they were very tight, but all went back together ok. Firing up for the first time was a bit of a worry. I'd glaze busted the cylinders and put the pistons in with a little grease as they were v tight, so when it finally did start to turn over it would have some lubrication. When it did fire up though a good deal of that stodgy grease burnt off with a bit of smoke. What the heck though, it fired up and I ran it for about 15 mins on tick over-1500rpm.

All sounds good eh, so why the 'but…' in the title, well after the 15 mins or so the starter kicked in (no joke it did) and everything sounded very bad. I turned the engine off, but when ever the key is in position II or III the starter engages. Suspects so far are… a trapped cable during the rebuild (though I can't see anything), a buggered starter, or switch/electrical. I'm starting with the leccy side of things as this is the cheapest thing to repair.

Valve dent in my 300TDI piston!

With nothing much else to do in the snow, I took the my 300TDI dicovery engine apart. I have a new cylinder head to put on, so I dropped the sump off and took the pistons out as well… might as well replace the big end bearings and piston rings whilst I'm doing the head. There is some good wear on the bearings as you'd expect as they were in from new and had covered 130K miles. The only thing of note was that the piston from the number 1 cylinder had what looks like a valve mark in it.

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300TDI piston with valve imprint

So, I've a cylinder head from ebay in the hope that it's ok, new big end bearings and in the end new pistons (as it was only a few quid cheaper to buy them built into the cylinder.

When it warms up I'll try and put it back together…

Landy for scrap?

After a broken cylinder head, loads of simple work and now a pool of frozen water on the inside, I walked away from the landy last night, give it a kick on the flat tyre and said that it old girl your for the scrap heap.

When I got up in the morning I found out she'd by crying all night…

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Cracks in my 300TDI Cylinder Head

With Adrian Hollister's stubborn 'it's better to reuse' mentality – I've been trying to keep my old 13 year old Landy on the road. This month it's been drinking water and producing vast quantities of white smoke (well steam) out the back. Most likely the head gasket, so whipping the head off and replacing is the way to go. On route I found a couple of cracks in the head just under the glow plug, I'm no mechanic but I'm guessing that this is not normal…

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Discovery 300TDI cracks in the Cylinder Head just under the glow plugs

Click on picture for a better view. Gonna fit a few gasket etc to see if it sorts the problem, if not I guess I need to look for a recon head ":-("

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Discovery 300TDI Cylinder Head
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300TDI Cylinder 2 with crack
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300TDI Cylinder 3 with crack

It’s company car time again – but which car?

I've had my company car (a Toyota Prius) for four years now and it's going back soon. The car has been utterly reliable – it's never broken. The fuel economy is good, the noise it produces is very good, and it fits Adrian Hollister + family & dog with no problems. The down side is that it's quite expensive for a company car. To help me decide I've test driven a couple of other cars – the BMW 320d, an X type Jag, and one of the new Ford Focus slightly more efficient 1.6D cars.

The beemer was just boring. Boring boring boring. No sat nav, no… well anything. It felt like the seats were optional, the noise was terrible – tractors down my road are much quieter, and the fuel economy worse than the Prius (with the same driving style and roads). The Jag just felt cramped and the family decided against it. The Focus seems smaller than the Prius and again it came with no basic's (my personal opinion is that sat nav and bluetooth integration are mandatory and actually very cheap for the manufacturers to provide). Fuel economy was great, so overall it's OK but nothing stunning.

Disheartened by the marketing hype on the BMW and the massive cost of the add-on's for both the BMW 320d and the Ford Focus I gave up for a bit. We had a quick look at a C30, but it's too small and CO2 output is very high; the same seems to apply to most of the other cars we looked at that would fit our family.

So what was the decision in the end? Well we are getting another Prius. The reasons in order of preference: Sat Nav, Bluetooth built-in, not waking up the family driving away in the morning (cos it's so darn quiet), watching the tyre fitters trying to work out how to drive the car on to the ramp (seriously – this is a hoot), low CO2, utterly reliable and good fuel economy.

Discovery 300TDI Waste Veggie Oil Conversion – the update

It's been a while now since I've been running on waste veggie oil, virgin veggie oil and diesel in my Landy. The 300TDI engine is just so basic it seems to lap it up without any concerns, but about 10K miles on here is my summary to date:

My random notes:

a. I replaced my heater plugs as the starting was a nightmare – whilst doing this I discovered that none of the heater plugs were actually glowing or getting warm! and by the look of some of them, they hadn't been for some time (well before the veggie conversion I'm guessing). New plugs are in and everything starts first time – even on pure veggie oil at 3-8 degrees outside temp.

b. IMHO technically Waste Veggie Oil is much much much better. It seems to burn cleanly, give good performance and leave little smoke. Normal virgin veggie oil is ok and seems to give a performance akin to Diesel but I've only gone through a small amount of the stuff. Of course the best way to use veggie oil has to be by using local waste veggie oil – so I'm not sure if I'm evaluating my estimate of performance of the waste oil on my moral interest in localisation. Either way it does seem to be the best.

c. The glow plug part of the veggie oil conversion seems to provide the best boost in starting and early running performance. The hot water side helps later (but almost by then the engine is already warm and handles it much better anyway).

d. Best ratio of veggie oil to diesel so far: Warmer temps (+10 degrees C) 100% veggie oil no problems. Cooler (0-10 degrees C) 60% Diesel 40% Veggie Oil. Cold (-8 – 0 degrees C) 98% Diesel 2% Veggie Oil. There is nothing scientific about this – this is just what I've experienced. With my heater plugs changed it may well allow me to run higher mixes.

e. Be pragmatic – use an injector cleaner regularly, don't expect miracles, and don't expect to make all your money back in one or two tanks – it's about the environmental savings as well you know.

f. Last thing… getting hold of waste veggie oil is getting very difficult!

Landrover Discovery 300TDI running on 100% SVO (straight veggie oil)

I’ve been running the landy on 50/50 veggie to diesel with no problem, but now the colder mornings are creaping in she is starting to get a little grumpy. Once warmed up the landy performs as usual without any clear difference (although people do feel compelled to tell me that it smells like a chip shop). I’ve added a heater element around the fuel filter which just cut’s off by thermistor when it reaches 90 degrees and kicks back in at 70; but this is just not enough for the colder mornings and days.

So, I’ve invested in something to make the veggie oil a little bit warmer (and therefore runnier) – it’s from Vow2. I’ve bought the VOW2DW+ unit which heats the oil from a couple of glow plugs and plumbs into the heating system of the engine. It pre-heats fuel on the way to the filter and warms it nicely on route to the pump and injectors.

Picture of the kit purchased.

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First off was the put the unit roughly in place and measure out the fuel pipes. It’s a bit messy cutting into the fuel pipes and removing the old connectors so don’t forget to put something under the fuel filter to catch the muck. Start with the pre-heater pipes as they are quite easy: take the fuel feed pipe from the fuel filter (i.e. the one that runs from the fuel lift pump to the fuel filter) – don’t forget to remove and keep the connector and the banjo bolt as you’ll need to re-use them on your new pipe. Measure and connect the heat exchanger inline (fuel lift pump->heat exchanger and heat exchanger to fuel filter in).

Next work on the fuel line from the fuel filter to the injector pump. Again the heat exchanger needs to be in-line so work on the fuel filter->heat exchanger and then heat exchanger->fuel pump. Don’t forget to put the small see through fuel filter inline before the pump – this will give you an idea of the level of waxing and will show you if you have any air ingress into the fuel system.

Picture below is the basic unit with fuel pipes cut to size and connectors added.

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As the location I’ve chosen for my heat exchanger is easy to get to for the fuel lines, it figures that the location is also difficult to get to for the heater water. But with a few 15mm household copper pipes, bends and a blow torch I’ve put together something that neatly allows me to cut through the inbound heater matrix water pipe (that has give or take a 15mm internal diameter). So, heater matrix inbound hot water is cut about 10cm short and plumbed directly into my 15mm copper pipe work which runs directly into the heat exchangers water input. I’ve used rubber hose connections between the copper and heat exchanger to reduce vibration. Next a short run from the heat exchanger water out to the original water heater matrix input in the bulk head. I’ve used copper to give me a good neat angle and to avoid pipes rubbing or kinking.

Now in situ with water pipes connected (in-line via the heater matrix feed). It’s a little difficult to see, so I’ll do some better photo’s later.

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At the moment it’s all just water heated, but boy does it get hot! With 80/20 (diesel/veggie oil) and outdoor temperatures of 2-5 degree’s C in the morning it all works just fine*. Next up are the electrics – with those in place I should be able to run higher levels of veggie oil without any of the ‘cold start’ problems.

 

*the definition of fine in this case is a few (well a lot) of glow plug action before starting the engine and perhaps even a few attempts to start. You need a good and working battery!

Greenie with a Land Rover

Oh how completely mad it seems, but yes, I've sold the car and got a landy. A 12 year old Land Rover Discovery. So what on earth is Adrian Hollister, a green bigot, doing with a diesel drinking pollution monster? Ok here is my rationale….

1. Re-use. The Landy is old – 12 years old. More than my old car would have made (before falling apart). So in my mind it's a question of re-using something that can be readily repaired. Most car's now are disposable – they last 5-10 years before they are scrapped and crushed. Very few Land Rovers get to the crusher, most are kept on the road and for this alone I think it would be worth a greener credential.

2. Alternative Fuels. Very few other car's adapt so well to running on other fuel types. The Disco can easily be converted to run on straight veggie oil (SVO), but is just as happy with bio-diesel's.

3. Need. Unlike most we do have a couple of acres of land and access is via a mud track. Not much else would get there so easily and not much else would be able to carry so much equipment up there.

4. Community. There is a great Land Rover community out there. Mechanics are local, garages are local, the business and the knowledge is spread from local communities to the world via forums and events. There is a great spirit of community in the Landy world.

Am I serious though? Attributing green credentials to a Land Rover?